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Literature Study GuidesMeridianPart 3 Section 26 Summary

Meridian | Study Guide

Alice Walker

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Meridian | Part 3, Section 26 : Ending (Free at Last) | Summary



This chapter is dated "A Day in April, 1968." It is the day of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s funeral, but he is not named. Meridian is in Atlanta for this occasion, seated outside the church where only famous people are welcomed. She later joins the parade that takes his body four miles to a resting place and notices that there is a sort of celebratory air among the mourners and is not sure what to make of that.


Like Part 2, this part begins with an epitaph by Anna Akhmatova. This four-line poem, "Requiem," speaks of surviving the difficult times of the Russian Revolution. Part 3, titled "Ending," is also about how it feels for Truman, Lynne, and Meridian to have lived through the tumultuous modern civil rights movement.

In this first chapter of the final part of the novel, readers can sense a turning point coming for Meridian. It's not clear what that will be, but it is unusual for Meridian to be confused about anything. Her confusion regarding the celebratory atmosphere at the funeral procession for Dr. King is a signal that she has some big inner event about to happen.

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